January 27, 2018, the breastfeeding community celebrated World Breast Pumping Day!
Unless you’re a pumping mom, no one really knows the endless sacrifice that pumping moms have in their breastfeeding journey.
Pumping Moms Get Sh!t Done!
This isn’t to say that breastfeeding or formula feeding mothers don’t get sh!t done – but it’s to recognize the fact that moms how pump, whether exclusively, by need or by choice, have added duties to their days. They not only have to take care of their child, they are also needing to make time to pump. They need to find a place to pump. And they need to have supplies to pump. With all those balls in the air, they also need to have peace of mind to pump enough.
In a society where fast paced is the key – pumping moms have to sacrifice free time for pump time.
Related Post: How Does a Mom Get Anything Done?
This movement is Necessary
Last year, the team from Snugabell, a Canadian retailer of pumping essential and creators of Pump Ease hands free nursing bras, set a date a side in January to honor all the moms who pump breast milk for their little ones. They wanted to create a special day, similar to that of the Big Latch On. Moms who pump, exclusively or as needed, would be celebrated and supported for their tireless efforts to nourish their children.
“The breastfeeding world can be overwhelming and moms who pump as part –or as all – of their breastfeeding journey often feel excluded. World Breast Pumping Day is an opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the time, energy, and dedication pumping requires; it’s a chance to honor the love in every ounce.”
This year’s them is “Pumping Moms Get Sh!t Done.”
We want to break through the pastel version of motherhood we’re fed by mainstream media and laud the perfectly imperfect reality of pumping moms. Pumpin’ mamas are building freezer stashes, waking up during the middle of the night to get one more pumping session in, skipping lunch with coworkers to pump at their desk while inhaling a sandwich, pumping beside their NICU babe’s bassinet, and sterilizing pump parts and bottles (so many pump parts and bottles) while they carry on with daily life.
As a pumping mom, the word “exhausted” is what I use to describe my day. It paints the color of no breaks – and literally, as a working mother, this was true. While on a lunch break, I was pumping. On a 15 minute break, I was pumping. Then when I returned home from work, I was breastfeeding. Truly the only time I was not doing anything, was when I was sleeping.
What this means and how you can participate
Recognizing that mothers need better resources, care and appreciation has been undying voice of women. As we enter into smaller communities of moms, the breastfeeding community, we still have micro communities that need additional support beyond the general need. Our working moms, our stay at home moms, our pumping moms need support. And that support is given by its members on days similar to the Big Latch On and World Breast Pumping Day. They are supported through unity and empowerment!
The work and dedication pumping requires is impressive. Pumping, setting up, cleaning up, feeding, storing the milk – pumping can take more than twice the time and effort than breastfeeding or formula feeding. We started to hear from pumping moms that they felt excluded from the breastfeeding world, especially exclusive pumpers. They said they didn’t feel like they were really breastfeeding, which was heartbreaking to hear because these women are hooking themselves up to machines, sacrificing sleep and relaxation and social lives to pump to feed their babies. We felt they needed to be acknowledged and celebrated.
So, on Jan 27, we took to social media- you can too
- Give a shout out to your friends, your neighbors, your co-workers, the woman commuting next to you – anyone who is a pumping mom and tell her she is amazing.
- Post photos of breast pumping moms, bottles of milk, or storage bags of breastmilk
- Look out for images you can share on social, then give other moms encouragement
- Use the hashtags #WeCanPump, #WhyIPump, and #PumpingMomsGTD
- Tag @Breastfeeding_world and @snugabell on Instagram or Twitter
- Then, join in the fun of giveaways at the Snugabell WBPD Event Page on Facebook throughout the day!
We want to reach moms where they are, scrolling through their phones and trying to catch their breath in between sterilizing bottles and serving dinner, wiping noses and bums, and rocking little ones to sleep. We want to acknowledge the many ways moms are getting shit done. Because we think moms are amazing and we’re tired of being fed this pastel version of motherhood where everyone is happy and everything is clean.
Life is messy and chaotic and there’s a certain type of beauty in the noise. World Breast Pumping Day is an opportunity for us all (moms-to-be or moms of many) to stand together and support each other’s choices, even if those choices look different than the ones we make for our own families.
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